Content Shock! – Is it real? How to respond to this?

Yes, we all know that content marketing plays a great role in brand awareness, audience engagement, targeting the right set of customers, so on and so forth.  But we have also heard about terms like content glut or content fatigue.

Mark Schaefer with his blog post on “Why content marketing is not a sustainable strategy”, coined the term “Content Shock”. The key focus of his thesis was that “each human has a physiological, inviolable limit to the amount of content that they can consume.”

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Today, if we see there is less traffic or engagement on our brand’s content, we assume it to content shock and feel there is nothing we can do about it…..but is ‘content shock’ real? Let’s take a look at the issues surrounding the content shock and as a content marketer, how to deal with it?

Content Shock, in simple terms, is the amount of content (supply) that is exponentially increasing on web today to the demand of such content. Today, it’s difficult for people to sift through all the content available. So does that mean it is the end of content marketing? Or the inbound marketing campaigns will be less effective because there are so many people who are trying to do the same thing in their content?

Content Shock may be real, in the sense that there is a ton of content being published every second in the form of articles, blog posts, videos, social updates etc etc, a glut of new ideas is surely a reality. But content shock is still unreal specifically; great content is all the more invaluable.

It’s true that content today doesn’t give you the boost it once did, but if the content is great, it will take you anywhere and everywhere.

How to cope up with this situation?

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  • Create more context based content: By knowing who your audience are and what they want from you, one can easily create content that connects with the target audience and followers in a more meaningful way. Once you realize that good content is about quality and niche targeting instead of views and volumes, you will stop being lumped with your competitors.
  • Be Unique: A huge asset of content marketing. No doubt it’s difficult to get people interested in your content when hundreds of variants of such content already exist on web. But for the same content, if you create an interactive graphic or a video instead of an article, you could have a hit in your hands.
  • Promote effectively: If having best content is one side of the coin, promoting it effectively is another side. Even if your content is not as good as your competitor but your promotion strategy is better, you can still win. But remember, even an excellent promotional strategy will not rescue crap content.
  • Leverage a brand: If you already have a brand that people trust, it is easy to get all the attention because if someone sees a large brand publish a piece of content, the very presence of the brand in the content helps it stand out of the noise. But if you don’t own a megabrand, it’s better to partner or rent one.

Despite what marketing gurus, internet influencers or business advisers talk about, we know the days of content marketing will never be over. The formula of great content and great promotion strategies can sail you through any changes in social engagement algorithms. It’s only the generic, average content that’s actually hitting the virtual dustbin.

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